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1919 Chateau d'Yquem Sauternes
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1919 was not a great year in Sauternes, however, the opportunity to taste the wine was a wine tasters moment of joy. Melbourne based businessman and brothers Tony and John Pratt acquired this bottle in London and had it shipped to Australia to commiserate their fathers birthyear. The distinguished gentlemen let it slip during conversation that the bottle would be opened this Christmas and that proved to be the trigger point for some of the most underhand 'smooging' ever practiced by a wine merchant. The brothers were reminded of all the great favours Nicks and Vintage Direct had done for them over the years - and suggested (rather heavy handedly) that some of these past favours and maybe a few future ones could be repaid by providing a small taste of this golden liquid. True to their word a sample arrived to be assessed a day after it was opened. The notes are qualified by the fact that the wine may have faded over the day, but none the less it is a record of a tasting that may be of interest to those who just happen to have a bottle tucked away in the cellar.The 1919 Chateau d'Yquem displays golden toffee yellow colour with green olive edges. The nose was still holding up, given the poor year and the age of the wine. Aroma of toffee, honey and a hint of lemon citrus with marmalade end notes. The palate is totally dried out, leaving behind only a faint trail of its youthful character. However, from the skeleton the body can be reconstructed. The palate flavours are very dry, with distinct amontillado sherry like flavours, followed by nuances of honey and toffee. The persistence is gone, the beginning of the palate offers little, but then a surprise return on the back palate, with nut, dry amontillado flavours that have a very long aftertaste. A great curiosity in its old age!